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Subject: Deterioration of Agfachrome slides

Deterioration of Agfachrome slides

From: Doug Nishimura <dwnpph>
Date: Monday, November 15, 1999
J. Claire Dean <clairedean [at] aol__com> writes

>...  The slides were taken in the 1960's using
>"Agfachrome" transparency film....
>In the last few years they have begun to turn pink and fade, and are
>obviously deteriorating as far as the image is concerned.  The film
>itself seems to be fine (no obvious signs of going brittle, sticky,
>or otherwise falling apart).

It sounds like you're simply suffering from dark fading. Up until
the late 1980's/early 1990's, the cyan dye was the least stable dye
in the dark. The problem could be exacerbated by reduction and this
was why good processing was of great importance to the stability of
the slide. (Large amounts of residual hypo or improperly regenerated
bleach among other things would cause the cyan dye to fade quite
rapidly by reduction.) Often we don't see this fading very readily
until it has gone quite far. We see many Ektachromes and Afgachromes
(as well as Anscochromes, etc.) from the 1960's that have faded and
shifted quite badly towards magenta (the most stable of the three
dyes in the dark.) Unless there is real evidence that this problem
occurred very suddenly and rapidly, I would suspect that it's simply
chromogenic dark fading.

Douglas Nishimura
Research Scientist
Image Permanence Institute

                  Conservation DistList Instance 13:30
               Distributed: Wednesday, November 17, 1999
                       Message Id: cdl-13-30-003
Received on Monday, 15 November, 1999

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